FIRST ALERT: Up to 2 inches of rain possible from possible tropical system

Updated: Jun. 18, 2021 at 5:30 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Much of South Carolina could receive large amounts of rain beginning Sunday from the remnants of a possible tropical system.

Live 5 News declared Sunday a First Alert Weather Day because of the possible impacts.

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Live 5 Chief Meteorologist Bill Walsh says the Lowcountry could receive between 1 to 2 inches of rain Sunday evening into Monday from the remnants of a system that could become the year’s third named storm.

The forecast track takes the storm toward the Upstate of South Carolina by early Monday morning, Walsh said.

System could take name ‘Claudette’ shortly before Gulf coast landfall

The National Hurricane Center is monitoring the system, which it is calling Potential Tropical Cyclone Three, that is expected to produce heavy rainfall and considerable flooding from Friday night through the weekend along the Central Gulf Coast.

As the system continues to lift northeast through the weekend, heavy rain will expand across southeastern Mississippi, southern and central Alabama, central to northern Georgia, far western North Carolina and western South Carolina, resulting in rainfall totals of 3 to 5 inches with isolated maximum amounts of 7 inches. Flash, urban, small stream and isolated minor river flooding impacts are possible.

As of 4 p.m. Friday, the system was already producing heavy rainfall and tropical-storm force winds along portions of the northern Gulf coast.

The system presented maximum sustained winds of 45 mph and was located the disturbance was centered near latitude 27.9 North, longitude 91.2 West.

The system is moving toward the north near 16 mph and a north to north-northeast motion is expected during the next day or so. On the forecast track, the system will make landfall along the north-central Gulf Coast Friday night or early Saturday. A northeastward or east-northeastward motion across the southeastern United States is forecast after landfall through the weekend.

Satellite images and surface observations indicate that the circulation is gradually becoming better defined, and the system still is likely to become a tropical or subtropical storm before landfall.

If it reaches tropical or subtropical storm strength, it would take the name Claudette, but weakening is expected to begin after the system crosses the coast.

City of Charleston preparing for possible flooding

The city of Charleston says it is monitoring the potential cyclone for the possibility of severe weather early next week, city spokesman Jack O’Toole said Friday.

The city’s stormwater department has secured pumps it will place in low-lying areas if needed, he said. Crews are clearing drains and ditches to prepare for the effects of potential flooding.

With the possibility of severe storms in the forecast for Sunday, city leaders are asking residents to keep their garbage cans secured and place them at the curb only when necessary.

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